A committee consisting of senior Telangana government officials in would be formed to inquire into complaints of overcharging by private hospitals for COVID-19 treatment. Health Minister Eatala Rajender gave orders to this effect on Saturday, following a series of complaints and news reports related to the issue.
He held a meeting in Hyderabad where officials informed him about the range of complaints, including private hospitals turning away patients citing unavailability of beds, collecting ₹3-4 lakh as advance for admission, ₹1-2 lakh a day for COVID-19 treatment and asking bills to be cleared before a body is handed over for last rites.
On June 15, a government order had been issued, announcing the maximum rates chargeable by private hospitals for various services provided by them for COVID treatment. The charges ranged between ₹4000 and ₹9000 per day depending on the ward and ventilator support.
Some services were excluded from the maximum rates such as charges for COVID testing, Personal Protection Equipment (PPE), high-end medicines such as immunoglobulins, high-end investigations such as CT-Scan, MRI, etc.
The Health Minister said the committee should ensure that the fixed rates are implemented, and that the government be regularly informed about availability of beds in private hospitals.